It’s Thursday of week 3 of my September Blogging Challenge and we’ve motored through 13 topics together! But before we get into all of that, I have to wish my mom a very HAPPY BIRTHDAY! She is truly the one to thank for all of my favorite foods (she’s an excellent chef) and so it’s rather fitting that this prompt falls on her birthday 🙂 Also, fun fact: today is Bill’s birthday too! When we found out that Bill shared a birthday with my mom, we knew he was meant to be part of our family – regardless of how feisty he was. But I mean, he’s a Virgo after all 😉
If you missed my blogging challenge announcement post, I’ve been feeling a little bit uninspired by blogging and social media and I wanted to bring it back to where it all began…little old me behind my keyboard tapping away. And so – that’s what is happening! I know there are “blog every day” challenges, but honestly – I don’t blog every day as it is, so committing to 30 days was intimidating for me. Instead, I put together 20 prompts that really inspired me and whipped up a list for when you can expect them here. Today’s prompt is 10 All-Time Favorite Foods. When I was making these prompts, I just made a huge list of all the topics that inspired me to want to write without necessarily thinking about order, so when it occurred to me that my favorite comfort foods and all-time favorite foods were back-to-back, it was too late to switch things up. OH WELL! Instead, I’m doing a spin on 10 all-time favorite foods, by sharing my 10 all-time favorite meals. Close enough, right? 😉
10 All-Time Favorite Foods
Vintage Cave in Honolulu for my birthday – Holy moly, this 21-course birthday dinner that Dane surprised me with in 2015 is still one we chat about regularly. We are (in no way) financially able to ever eat here again, but it was incredible and a memory I will cherish forever.
Dinner in Radda, Tuscany – For me, this meal was delicious – a simple truffle pasta – but the real delight came in seeing Dane’s face when the Fiorentina came to the table. This particular region of Italy is known for their incredible steaks and I don’t think I’ve ever seen Dane so excited about a meal! I also remember the house wine being particularly good, too!
Engagement dinner at Devon’s in Hershey, PA – Dane and I got engaged on January 3, 2013 and it was all very sweet (our engagement story). We went out to eat afterward at a seafood restaurant near my hometown and I ordered salmon. I remember thinking “this is the best salmon I’ve ever eaten” and to this day – I believe it is. We’ve gone back nearly every time we go home to Pennsylvania and it’s never as good, but that night it was!
Food from culinary school in Chiang Mai – It’s no secret that our trip to Thailand is one of our all-time favorite vacations. The day we spent at Thai Farm Cooking School was a highlight by far! We cooked up so much delicious food and it is the main reason I feel so adventurous in the kitchen with international recipes.
First time we ate at Arancino at the Kahala in Honolulu, HI – The first time we ever ate at Arancino, I felt like I was back in Italy. It was before Dane had a chance to go, so he took my word for it 😉 The service there is incredible, the food perfectly cooked and the drinks are delicious. They used to serve a martini with coconut foam and it was so dang good! We’ve been back a handful of times for special occasion meals, but nothing has ever been quite as special as the first time.
Stuffed parrotfish at Rudy’s in Moorea – Very rarely does Dane feel super adamant about particular restaurants when we travel, so I know it’s a good find when he plans out a specific place. When we spent 3 days in Moorea this spring, we enjoyed the stuffed parrotfish from Rudy’s and it’s every bit as decadent as the reviews say. In fact, we went twice during our stay and would have gone a third night if we could have gotten in! It’s the perfect portion, the place is nothing too fancy, the service is quick and the food is super fresh. We are already looking forward to going back for that meal alone!
Wedding dinner for my aunt in Chicago, IL – My family has a few longstanding jokes that never die and one of them is that the best meal I ever ate was at my aunt’s wedding. She got married at a country club in Chicago and I was just recovering from a torn meniscus in my knee. I was on crutches, so the idea of getting all dressed up for a wedding was unappealing at best, but THE MEAL! It was a chicken breast that had been beaten, soaked in honey dijon mustard and then coated in pretzels and baked. It was served with green bean bundles with almonds and piped garlic mashed potatoes. My parents laugh that I still remember all the details and have tried many times to recreate it (sorry, no dice)!
Pretty much any meal at my parent’s house – My parents are incredible cooks and on any random day they are like “Oh, we are just making some homemade pizzas” or my mom’s favorite line of all “Oh, this is just a little something I whipped up” and she presents you with some 18-tiered dessert. Like I said – just mind blowing. Better yet, they grow tons of vegetables and herbs in their own garden, shop organic, and source locally when they can so I always feel really good about eating whatever comes out of their kitchen.
Blind food tasting at Four Seasons Lanai – Right before Dane left for Afghanistan, his parents met us at the Four Seasons on Lanai and stayed for an extended weekend. One of the last nights, we went for a blind food tasting with wine pairings at ONE FORTY. It was so good that we wound up sitting, eating, drinking and laughing for around 5 hours! I just remember thinking to myself what a special night it was to share together.
And just because this prompt did specifically ask for foods that I love, here are some in no particular order: Honeycrisp apples (and apple pie made from them), Sour Patch Kids, hot bread, Middlesworth BBQ chips, chunky peanut butter, French toast, Eggs Benedict, avocado and acai bowls.
This was a fun one reliving all the meals that have made such a lasting impression on me – clearly I like to eat! 😉 If you shared your favorite foods or meals today, feel free to link up below and come back tomorrow for a letter to my teenage self!